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Today I have a pair of pointy animals, one from the Southern and one from the Northern hemisphere!

echidna This is an echidna from Australia. This card was sent by Kathryn in Tasmania. Echidnas belong to a group called monotremes- they are mammals that lay eggs. Echidnas are related to platypuses. They are good at burrowing, eat small insects, and use their spines for defense. This short-beaked echidna is the most common native Australian animal. There are also three kinds of long-beaked echidnas that are native to New Guinea.

Kathryn used a stamp of another great Southern hemisphere animal, the penguin:

AUSTRALIA-penguinsThe second spiky animal I have comes from Wesley in the Netherlands. Wesley sent me this card of an adorable hedgehog!

Hedgehogs are also common animals and they also eat insects and use their spines for defense. People like to have them in their gardens because they eat the insects. Wesley writes that the hedgehogs he has seen do not seem afraid of humans, but he leaves them alone just in case. They can’t detach their spines like porcupines do, but it does seem better to be safe than to be poked by a hedgehog. We can admire their cuteness from afar, anyway!

Wesley used some nicely festive stamps:



Here are some funny videos with “true facts” about echidnas and hedgehogs. They aren’t really true, although echidna babies really are called puggles and hedgehogs really do get tubes stuck on their head a lot: